I was on my way to a job interview today, looking uncharacteristically smart - full suit, tie from the '80s, non-leather shoes scrubbed clean - when I saw a couple kissing in a tunnel.
This wasn't a unique occurrence. I mean, a lot of couples kiss, and long tunnels (the ones you walk down, not the ones that the Underground trains actually travel through) are public places, so you're perfectly allowed to kiss, there's nothing prohibiting it (unlike the other 4,123,236 things you're forbidden to do by the multitude of notices they have on the Tube). But this was different. He (a scruffy-looking, obviously cool, young man with a beard and a guitar) was pressing her (a pretty young girl with a hat and a huge smile against a corner in a wall - one of those that looks like a busking spot - and they were... well... making out.
I'm aware that's an American phrase, so I'll try to clarify - they were kissing a lot more explicitly than I've seen a lot of couples do on public places. It was affectionate, intense and touchy-feely... the kind of kiss more suited to a bed than a public tunnel on the London Underground.
The commuters around me all tutted. But they didn't seen to mind... and neither did I.
Why should I mind? What business is it of mine to stop people kissing? Through my head whizzed a few things - who they might be, how they met, was it spontaneous (it looked so!), what did they do, Rebecca Black ringing in my ears as my iPod decided to choose the right song for the moment - and for a few seconds I was lost in a whole constructed world for these two unknown people, lost in their kiss and clearly oblivious to the world around them. They were in their world and we were in ours. And for that, I applaud them.
I live in a country where public displays of affection are not frowned upon or forbidden. Embracing that should be part of our culture.
And it warms my heart, too.